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Questions submitted to the U.S. Army from 'For the Record' for 'Armed and Unaccountable


All Bold Text was provided directly from TheBlaze.

1. Why was a “rescind and destroy” memo issued for the April 25, 2012 ATEC report,

calling for it to be replaced with revised version dated May 25, 2012? What did the

revised material include?

A: An investigation revealed that the “rescind and destroy” memo was issued in order to

ensure that the 25 April 2012 FOAR [Forward Operational Assessment Review] “properly

reflected the strengths and weaknesses of Palantir and that the recommendations in the

report were in line with the report's purpose.” The investigating officer did not find that the

direction was attributable to “anyone attempting to improperly advance the Army’s DCGS-A

Program of record.”

2. We've been told (by person(s) with knowledge of meetings and discussions on topic)

that Lt. Gen. Mary Legere “strongly encouraged subordinates to endorse DCGS's

capabilities and dismiss Palantir as an effective component to DCGS.” In that, what

is Lt. Gen. Legere's response to that statement? How does Lt. Gen. Legere assess

Palantir's capabilities v. DCGS's capabilities?

A: The Army strongly endorses the best intelligence capabilities for our warfighter,

regardless of the industrial partner who is providing that capability. The service has been a

very open advocate of innovation and increased industry outreach opportunities with all

industry partners.

Army senior leaders fully supported industry outreach efforts to include the Cooperative

Research and Development Agreement with Palantir that was signed May 30, 2012 in order

to gain a greater understanding about how the Army can leverage Palantir capabilities. We

have frequently encouraged Palantir officials to take part in numerous Industry Days and

other DCGS-A initiatives. The Army plans to open up several DCGS-A opportunities for

competition in the coming years, and is hopeful that all large and small industry partners will

compete. It is important to note that DCGS-A also includes hardware, trucks, antennas and

other equipment in addition to software applications and it is currently supported by over 60

industry partners.

Reference for question 3: The 1996 Clinger Cohen Act established the role of the

agency CIO who is responsible for "developing, maintaining and facilitating

the implementation of a sound and integrated IT architecture. The architecture is an

integrated framework for evolving or maintaining existing IT and acquiring new IT. The

agency heads shall identify in the agency's IRM plan (required by the Paperwork Reduction

Act (PRA)), major IT acquisition programs that have significantly deviated from

their respective cost, performance or schedule goals."

3. According to OMB Circular No. A-130 Revised, as part of the capital planning

process, each agency must "Support work processes that it has simplified or

otherwise redesigned to reduce costs, improve effectiveness, and make maximum

use of commercial, off-the-shelf technology." How has the Army complied with the

outlined requirements of this law, pertaining to DCGS-A?

A: The DCGS-A Program participates with approximately 60 small and large commercial

industry partners across the country that support DCGS-A. Each partner must be compliant

with intelligence community data and standards and willing to build an open architecture.

Ease of use, interoperability and easy access to data are critical factors for these

participants in their work supporting the Army. Attached is a list of some of the industry

partners that helps develop the software in use with DCGS-A.

4. According to the 4th Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division's

"USAICoE Lessons Learned Collection Report" report dated January 2013, "DCGS-A

is not an enterprise system capable of replacing the Army’s multiple intelligence

ground processing systems." The November 2013 memo "Training Requirements to

Maintain Proficiency of DCGS-A" attributes the following assessment to the 130th

Engineering Brigade "DCGS continues to be; unstable, slow, not friendly and a major

hindrance to operations at the [battalion] level." What is Lt. Gen. Legere's response

to these assessment of the program and why does there appear to be a disconnect

between the DCGS-A assessment of Army personnel in theater and the assessment

of Army officials stateside?

A: The Army takes user feedback seriously and has implemented that feedback into the

current version of DCGS-A that is in use in Afghanistan. In fact, in response to feedback,

Army officials directed an ease of use campaign to specifically address user concerns which

has resulted in a number of improvements included in the latest version of the DCGS-A

software. The changes have been well received by our Soldiers. We will continue to

leverage our soldier’s feedback to improve all aspects of the DCGS-A system, including

software, hardware, ground stations, topographic support, etc.

5. What's the status of Red Disk and why have the previous two attempts to integrate

DCGS via cloud computing architecture been unsuccessful?

A: The Army, like all of the Services, is working with the Intelligence Community to migrate

to the Intelligence Community cloud standards and to provide enhanced capability to our

Warfighters. Previous DCGS-A cloud efforts have contributed to the Army’s and other

Services’ understanding of these requirements while also serving the needs of our forces in

theater. Red Disk, a separate effort from DCGS-A, will inform the Army’s future

requirements for DCGS-A.

6. Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-CA) has called for an investigation into the misuse of DCGS-A

funding in an October 29, 2013 letter saying "It was recently confirmed by the House

Armed Services Committee that Operations and Maintenance funds may have been

used for further Research, Development, Test and Evaluation funding for the Army's

Distributed Common Ground System (DCGS-A)...If accurate, this would be a clear

violation of the Antideficiency Act (ADA)."

What's the Army's response to this accusation and where did the Army allocate these

funds in question?

A: The Army Audit Agency is currently conducting an audit of the DCGS-A Program of

Record in direct response to Rep. Hunter’s latest concerns. We are awaiting the results of

the audit and it is premature to comment at this time.

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